By Mikhail Aleksandrovich Bakunin
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Additional resources for Bakunin on anarchy: A new selection of writings nearly all published for the first time in English by the founder of the world anarchist movement
Yes. Men and women alike possess the qualities which make a guardian; they diﬀer only in their comparative strength or weakness. Obviously. And those women who have such qualities are to be selected as the companions and colleagues of men who have similar qualities and whom they resemble in capacity and in character? Very true. And ought not the same natures to have the same pursuits? They ought. Then, as we were saying before, there is nothing unnatural in assigning music and gymnastic to the wives of the guardians—to that point we come round again.
And even this story gains credence from what their youths now endure, many of whom I have seen expiring under the lash at the altar of Artemis Orthia [a Spartan cult]. ” In this way the boys were accustomed to pass right judgements and interest themselves at the very outset in the conduct of the citizens. For if one of them was asked who was a good citizen, or who an infamous one, and had no answer to make, he was judged to have a torpid spirit, and one that would not aspire to excellence. And the answer must not only have reasons and proof given for it, but also be couched in very brief and concise language, and the one who gave a faulty answer was punished with a bite in the thumb from the eiren.
Good heavens! my dear friend, I said, what consummate skill will our rulers need if the same principle holds of the human species! Certainly, the same principle holds; but why does this involve any particular skill? Because, I said, our rulers will often have to practise upon the body corporate with medicines. Now you know that when patients do not require medicines, but have only to be put under a regimen, the inferior sort of practitioner is deemed to be good enough; but when medicine has to be given, then the doctor should be more of a man.
Bakunin on anarchy: A new selection of writings nearly all published for the first time in English by the founder of the world anarchist movement by Mikhail Aleksandrovich Bakunin